« ForrigeFortsæt »
flowers planted by her own hand, and with the utmost solicitude 'keeping in order, the fytoca where lay the body of her deceased friend. For the space
of six months this faithful mourner scarcely ever slept but on his grave, watering it with her tears, and disturbing the silence of the night with her sighs. One day she went to the house of Mo-oonga Toobó, widow of the deceased chief, to communicate what had happened to her at the fytoca during several nights, and which caused her the greatest anxiety. She related having dreamed that the late How appeared to her, and, with a countenance full of disappointment, asked why there yet remained at Vavaoo so many evil designing persons ; for that, since he had been at Bolotoo, his spirit had been disturbed by the evil machinations of wicked men conspiring against his son; but he declared that “ the youth ” should not be molested, nor his power shaken by the spirit of rebellion ; that therefore he came to her with a warning voice, to prevent such disastrous consequences. The apparition next desired her to place in order the pebble-stones upon his grave,* and pay every attention to the fytoca; then disappeared. Mo-oonga Toobó, upon hearing this account, thought it expedient to search the fytoca, to see if the charm of tattao + had not been practised in regard to
It must here be recollected, that mourners were accustomed to smooth the graves of their departed friends, and cover them with black and white pebbles.
+ The charm of tattao consists in hiding upon the grave, or in any part of the fyloca, some portion of the wearing apparel of an inferior relation of the deceased, in consequence of which that relation will sicken and die ; or, it may be buried in the house consecrated to the tutelar god of the family. This charm is not supposed to have
the present Finow. They accordingly went together to the grave, and, after accurate examination, they discovered several bits of gnatoo, and a wreath of flowers curiously formed in a peculiar manner, invented by one of the wives of the king, and which they recollected to have seen him wear round his neck a few days before.
This circumstance being communicated to Finow, and coming to the ears of his chiefs, and of the matabooles of the late How, produced considerable consternation among many of them. Finow, however, with that cool presence of mind which marked his character, issued orders to his chiefs to keep a vigilant look out ; and, without discovering the least alarm, did every thing in the way of preparation against the worst that might happen. He kept Mr Mariner constantly near him, that they might not be accidentally separated in case of any public disturbance. On all occasions he endeavoured to make the conspirators (if any such, there were) believe that he was perfectly off his guard, and in conscious security, and, the better to convince them of this, he feigned to imagine that the bits of buried gnatoo, &c. must have been hidden there by some dogs in their play. All this precaution, however, and studied policy, were unnecessary, as no signs of conspiracy became evident, and perhaps no conspiracy existed. In the mean time, the building and fortifying the garrison with extra ditches went on with despatch, and, in a short time, was completed to the perfect satisfaction of Finow.
the desired effect when the grave of a deceased person is made use of, unless the deceased was of superior rank to "he person on whom the charm is practised.
Shortly after the fortress was finished, a canoe arrived from the Hapai Islands with Tonga-mana, a chief of the line of Tooitonga, who came from Toobó Toa, with a request to know how the inachi * was to be sent to Tooitonga, seeing Finow had declared that no communication whatever was to be kept up with Hapai. As all on board were habited in mats, with leaves of the ifi tree round their necks, as a token of submission, and that they came upon a religious duty, they were permitted to land. After having presented cava to several consecrated houses, they came before Finow, and presented some to him; then opened the subject of their mission. They came they said with a request from Toobó Toa, that Finow would grant him permission to present himself at Vavaoo, to pay his last respects to the memory of the late king, by performing the usual ceremonies at his grave; hoping that, although he seemed determined to cut off all communication with the Hapai Islands, he would not carry his decree to such an extent as to form an insuperable bar to the performance of a religious duty; for that he (Toobó Toa) wished to take his last farewell of a great chief, who, while living, he so bighly esteemed, and whose memory he had now so much reason to respect. After Finow had heard the subject of the embassy, he said in reply, that he should consult his chiefs and matabooles as to what measures he ought to take, and would return a definitive answer as soon as possible. Tonga-mana and his party then rose up and went down to the
* The annual tribute of the first fruits of each island, to Tooitonga
beach, where their canoe was, and passed the night in the canoe-house.
Immediately after they had departed, Finow held a council with his chiefs and matabooles, the result of which was, that Toobó Toa should be allowed to send the inachi, provided Tonga-mana's canoe only were sent, and that this particular canoe should be allowed to come on any after occasion, upon condition that there were no more men on board than should be sufficient to constitute a crew: and if he encroached upon this law, the canoe was never to be allowed to come again. But the question regarding Toobó Toa's coming was reserved for a future opportunity. This resolution was made, partly from religious motives, and partly to show the Hapai people that they entertained no fears of them, but chiefly, perhaps, to demonstrate to Toobó Toa, how well provided and well armed they were against all attacks from a foreign enemy The following morning, at cava, this resolution was communicated to Tonga-mana, upon which he departed immediately, on his return to the Hapai Islands. As soon as Toobó Toa heard the permission granted by Finow, he ordered the tributes from the different islands (intended for the inachi) to be collected together, and put on board Tonga-mana’s canoe. At the same time, the inhabitants of Tofooa, an island belonging to Tooitonga, eager to send their tribute for the inachi, also despatched a canoe to accompany that of Toobó Toa; and although this was contrary to Finow's strict injunction, still they flattered themselves that, as it was a canoe from Tooitonga's own island, it would be overlooked. But in this they were mistaken, for no sooner did the people of Vavaoo perceive two canoes, instead of one, coming to their shores, than they raised a great clamour, contending that the Hapai people had a mind to be treacherous that, under the mask of religion, they were coming as spies; and, making these complaints to Finow, they called loudly for orders against such a proceeding, insisting that one of the canoes should be sent back before the other was allowed to land. Finow, seeing the conduct of the Hapai people, and hearing the complaints of his own, immediately gave orders that Tooitonga's canoe should be instantly sent away, else neither of them would be allowed to land. Perceiving, however, afterwards, that Tooitonga's canoe was laden with part of the tribute, and as it would have been sacrilegious to have sent back any portion of what was intended for the inachi, he ordered it to be landed, and the canoe, with all its men, who, by the by, were choice warriors, to be sent back immediately. On this occasion, Finow, reflecting how easy it would be for any of the Vavaoo people to leave the island in Tooitonga’s canoe, because the law which he had previously made extended only to that of Tonga-mana ; and seeing no way of preventing the evil, he openly proclaimed to the people, that if any wished to go and reside at Hapai, they had now an opportunity, but that they would not be permitted to return to Vavaoo. No one, however, thought proper to leave the island.